Ryan Tannehill walked out of the Dolphins locker room Sunday like a mummy.
And yet, Dan Campbell thinks his battered quarterback will make his 64th straight start this weekend.
Now for the more pressing question: Can Tannehill and Brent Grimes co-exist in that locker room moving forward?
Grimes’ wife, Miko, probably made that more difficult with her foul Twitter screed roasting the Dolphins’ polarizing quarterback.
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But Campbell, speaking to reporters the day after yet another Dolphins loss, believes they can.
Any conversation that I have with Brent will be just between us. I’m going to keep anything that deals with that in-house.
Miami Dolphins coach Dan Campbell
“I’ve never sensed that there’s been any animosity or disconnect between those two players,” Campbell said Monday. “That’s never been an issue. I still don’t believe that’s an issue.”
Campbell added: “One of the biggest issues would be between those two guys, and I just don’t see it. I’ve never seen it.”
A quick recap of why this is even a conversation, for those who need to be caught up:
Miko Grimes, the same person was arrested on charges she struck a cop outside Sun Life Stadium earlier this season (the charges were later dropped), has long had Tannehill in her verbal crosshairs.
It escalated late Sunday, when Miko Grimes wrote on Twitter that she knew Tannehill “stunk the minute we signed to this team but I tried to keep quiet so I didn’t discourage [her husband] from believing in his team.”
Miko Grimes also wrote that she heard that the Dolphins’ offense didn’t complete a single pass in two-minute drills this week.
Separately she wrote that it was a “fact” that “the whole team hates Ryan Tannehill.”
On Monday, Campbell tried to tamp out the fire Miko Grimes lit.
When asked if he has spoken with Brent Grimes since the dust-up, Campbell responded:
“Any conversation that I have with Brent will be just between us,” Campbell said. “I’m going to keep anything that deals with that in-house.”
But Campbell added: “To be honest with you, I’m not concerned with those things. I’m concerned with the way our guys in our locker room handle their own business with each other. I’m not worried about outside noise.”
Brent Grimes, who is far more introverted than his wife, will not again speak to reporters until Wednesday. So it’s unclear if he will address the issue, or even agrees with her; he’s downplayed past controversies involving his wife.
But certainly, this isn’t the kind of attention he needs. His skills are unquestionably diminished this year, and it’s hard to envision the Dolphins keeping Grimes under his projected $9 million cap figure. By cutting him, the Dolphins would both save money and rid themselves of a distraction.
Campbell, meanwhile, appears most concerned with just finishing out the season.
When asked if a team can punish a player for the actions of his wife, Campbell responded:
“Not that I know of. I don’t think you can do that. Because that’s not him.”
As for Tannehill, the Dolphins are more concerned about his physical wellbeing than his mental. He limped out of the locker room Sunday with his entire leg wrapped -- the result of a leg whip from Colts defensive lineman Erik Walden. Tannehill’s health already wasn’t great; he found blood in his urine late last week, the Miami Herald first reported.
But Campbell said the team has given no thought to shutting Tannehill down for the rest of this lost season.
When asked about Tannehill’s availability for Week 17’s game against the Patriots, Campbell responded: “I think we have to take it day-to-day. My gut tells me he should be ready to go, but we’ll see what he looks like Wednesday.”